Energy from biomass

Wood gasifiers and CHP units heat greenhouses

Heating with sustainable heat

The nursery J. Lercher has been running the family business for over 30 years. The company is located in the Bavarian town of Bruck and specialises primarily in flower arrangements and floristry. There are currently 5 greenhouses at the site with a total of approx. 5,000 m² of heatable space. Already in the year 2007 the company Lercher decided for products of the Burkhardt GmbH for the heat supply of the nursery. The two combined heat and power plants with Scania engines and 200 kW electrical output each will initially be operated with vegetable oil. The greenhouse surfaces are heated by tube and table heaters as well as heat-guided air heaters. The heat produced for the nursery is needed all year round. In addition, both the flower shop and a 5-party house can be supplied with heat.

Switching to wood gas

In 2011 the Lercher company again decided on a technology with renewable energies from Burkhardt: the wood gasifier. During the gasification process, the biomass is converted in several steps into a product gas that can later be burned in the block-type thermal power station. The fuel used is standardized wood pellets, which ensure a stable process due to their constant properties. The reason for the switch to wood gas was the enormous rise in prices for palm oil and heating oil, with which operation was no longer economical. With a wood gasifier type V3.90 and the existing CHP converted to wood gas, heat has been supplied since then. The electricity generated is fed into the grid. The two modules together generate 270 kW thermally and 180 kW electrically. Before the conversion to the wood gasification plant, approx. 70,000 litres of heating oil were used annually to supply the nursery. The current annual heating oil consumption is, depending on the weather, only approx. 5,000 to 10,000 litres.

Utilization of the energy source

The special feature: the entire exhaust air from the wood gasifier and CHP unit, which is up to 50°C warm, is fed directly into the greenhouse via air ducts. This use provides the nursery with an additional 30 to 50 kW of heat and also protects the environment, as almost 100% of the energy from the wood pellets is used.

One of the 5 greenhousesExterior view of the central heating plant with the wood gas CHP plantLarge product range at J. Lercher

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